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New Escapist Column! On “The Batman” and the Obsession with a Grim and Gritty Caped Crusader…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist yesterday evening. The latest trailer for The Batman has reopened a familair debate within fandom around a sensitive topic: the question of a grim and gritty Batman.

Certain fans react strongly against takes on comic book characters that do not match their own particular tastes. In particular, there’s a tendency to react strongly to interpretations of the Caped Crusader that emphasise the character as grounded and pulpy, to act as if these takes exist at the expense of others. In reality, there is a rich variety of takes on the Dark Knight in popular culture, of various shapes and sizes. There is a Batman for all seasons, and often these arguments feel less about trying to argue for more diverse takes on classic characters and instead about arguing that there is only one right take.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Absolute Batman: The Long Halloween (Review)

Say what you will about the Caped Crusader, as well as having the finest rogues gallery in comicdom, he also gets most of the best storylines and plots. The Long Halloween is widely considered a classic, a true Batman story for the ages and a perfect companion to Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One. In many ways, both stories heavily influence the two Christopher Nolan Batman movies (Batman Begins and The Dark Knight) to the point where the notoriously shy-about-his-work Nolan actually provides the introduction to this collection. There’s a mark of quality right there. The story is so highly regarded for a reason, and has helped define one of the most enduring depictions of the Batman.

Batman might not be able to leap buildings in a single bound, but that won't stop him trying...

Batman might not be able to leap buildings in a single bound, but that won't stop him trying...

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